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Millions of people live with a condition they’d rather not talk about: overactive bladder. 

Instead of raising the issue with their doctor, many people with overactive bladder let the condition disrupt their lives by avoiding events. Or they go out, but do so in fear of an embarrassing incident. These concerns can be alleviated by talking with a doctor about potential treatment options.

The FDA recently approved a new treatment called vibregon. In clinical trials, the medication significantly reduced the number of urgent urinations as well as urinary incontinence. There are several other treatments on the horizon.

Understanding Overactive Bladder

Overactive bladder is defined by the involuntary contraction of muscles in the bladder. It creates an urgent need to urinate even when the amount of urine in the bladder is low. Overactive bladder can cause patients to urinate eight or more times within 24 hours – including during the night.

While the condition is most prevalent among older people, it is by no means limited to them. Upward of 30% of men and 40% of women live with overactive bladder, according to the Urology Care Foundation.

The condition can develop as a side effect of other medical problems, including some neurological disorders, diabetes, urinary tract infections and hormonal changes associated with menopause. Additionally, some medications can cause overactive bladder, as can lifestyle issues like excessive consumption of alcohol or caffeine.

Having the Conversation

There’s no better time than now, during Bladder Health Awareness Month, for patients who have brushed aside frustrations about their overactive bladder to take the first step toward better management of the condition.

No one should have their life controlled by fear of an accident that doesn’t have to happen.

Visit the website of AfPA’s new Urology Initiative to learn more about overactive bladder and other urology conditions.

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